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Anyone who has ever made a film can attest to the fact that filmmaking is an incredibly demanding and coordinated effort, requiring months (and sometimes years!) of planning, writing, shooting, performing and editing. Filmmaking professionals work tirelessly, orchestrating large crews of specialists, performers and even musicians, to create a singular work of art over the span of thousands of hours of sweat-soaked labour. 

Films are a lot of work. Sounds exhausting, doesn’t it? Well, try doing it in 48 hours. In fact, that’s precisely what ED VIDEO and the GUELPH ARTS COUNCIL are inviting you to do – participate in the Guelph 48 Hour Film Challenge!

Teams will meet at the starting line (Ed Video) at 7pm on Friday, October 27th, 2023. At 8pm, they will be given an envelope. Inside that envelope will be a line of dialogue, a theme, a location and a prop. All of those elements MUST be within the film that will be made over the next 48 hours. The Film Challenge ends at 8pm on October the 29th (again, at Ed Video), and two weeks later all films will be screened at the Bookshelf Cinema and prizes awarded in various categories including Best Performer, Best Sound Design, and of course Best Film. 

You can have as many team members as you like, and it costs $30 to enter a team (that’s for the whole team, not per person). Films must be between 4-6 minutes and must be handed in on a physical medium (Data DVD, Thumb Drive, Portable Hard Drive – they will be returned to you) before 8pm on Sunday the 29th. Any films handed in after the deadline will still be screened publicly, but will not be in contention for prizes. 

Do you have to be a professional filmmaker? Absolutely not. The time frame and the envelope with prompts become a great equalizer between professional and aspiring filmmakers, and we welcome and encourage any and all to enter. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can even mix mediums. Animation? Sure! Stop Motion? That works too – we just ask that no pre-rendered models be used with animation. It’s fundamental to the challenge that the entire piece be conceived, written, shot and edited within the 48 hours.

Interested in participating but don’t have a team? Email [email protected] and indicate that you’re in search of a team. We will do our best to find you one, or if there are enough people in a similar position we will create a team for you – we’d like as few barriers to participation as possible.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. And if you’re ready to go, sign up here:


See you on October 27th! Ready, Set, ACTION!

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